April 9, 2017
For Immediate Release
Are You Dense Advocacy, Inc.
Representative Elizabeth 'Liz' Thomson, a breast cancer survivor, introduced HB 243 to give women of New Mexico critical information about their breast tissue composition to improve communication about breast health and personalized screening.
Governor Martinez of New Mexico did not take action on the density reporting bill before the April 7th deadline. While the bill received unanimous support in both the House and Senate, it fell prey to a pocket veto. The bill was one of many bills vetoed by the governor that were broadly supported.
"As a breast cancer survivor, I feel strongly that all women deserve the best care possible. I will definitely bring the bill before the legislature until it becomes law in New Mexico," declared Representative Liz Thomson after receiving news about the veto.
The New Mexico Department of Health reports that breast cancer remains the most common cancer in the state and the second leading cause of cancer deaths among New Mexico women. Each year an estimated 1,300 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer and nearly 250 women will die.
This is the second time that a density reporting bill was vetoed. In 2011. Governor Brown of California vetoed the density reporting bill. The following year, with the relentless leadership of Senator Joe Simitian, California became the 5th state to enact a density reporting law on September 22, 2012.
Currently there are 29 state density reporting, as Colorado's bill was signed into law on April 6th. Iowa and Kentucky are awaiting Governors' action.
Connecticut was the first state to enact a density reporting law in 2009, inspired by Nancy M. Cappello, Ph.D., after her advanced stage 3c breast cancer, metastasized to 13 lymph nodes, was discovered within weeks of her 11th normal mammogram. It was at this time that the impact of her dense breast tissue and its challenges to detect cancer by mammogram alone was revealed to her by her team of doctors.
Twenty-Nine Density Reporting States:
Connecticut (2009), Texas (2011), Virginia, New York, California (2012), Tennessee, Hawaii, Maryland, Alabama, Nevada, Oregon, North Carolina, Pennsylvania (2013), Ohio, Missouri, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Minnesota, Arizona, New Jersey (2014) Louisiana, Delaware, North Dakota, Michigan (2015), Indiana, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Vermont (2016) Colorado (2017)
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